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Meridian Bioscience Fiscal Q3 Revenues Dip 6 Percent

NEW YORK – Meridian Bioscience today reported a 6 percent year-over-year decrease in its fiscal third quarter revenues driven primarily by competitive pressures in the diagnostics segment.

The Cincinnati-based life science and diagnostics firm recorded revenues of $48.4 million compared to $51.7 million a year ago, missing analysts' consensus estimate of $49.8 million.

"While we were anticipating a challenging third quarter, our overall sales performance came in at the lower end of our expectations," Jack Kenny noted in a statement, adding that the flatness of the life sciences segment was also below expectations.

Meridian's diagnostics revenues were down 9 percent year over year to $33.1 million from $36.4 million, while its life science revenues were flat for the quarter at $15.3 million.

Within diagnostics, revenues for molecular assays declined 21 percent to $5.9 million from $7.5 million, while revenues from immunoassays and blood chemistry assays declined 6 percent to $27.2 million from $28.9 million. The segment experienced continuing competitive pressures in its molecular products, particularly C. difficile testing, and it saw volume and pricing declines in some gastrointestinal products, according to a statement.

The firm's acquisition of GenePOC and its Revogene molecular diagnostics platform is intended to directly address competitive pressures and trends in the molecular portion of the diagnostics product portfolio, Kenny said. "We are optimistic that our integration activities are on track, and early customer feedback for the Revogene molecular diagnostics platform has been positive," he said.

In the life sciences segment, Meridian's molecular reagent product revenues declined 8 percent, while immunological reagent revenues grew 5 percent year over year. The revenues in life sciences reflected double-digit growth in EMEA and China offset by softness in the Americas.

Meridian's Q3 net earnings were $5.1 million, or $.12 per share, compared to $8.6 million, or $.16 per share a year ago. On an adjusted basis, EPS was $.16, beating analyst expectations of $.09.

Meridian's Q3 R&D expenses were $4.6 million, up 5 percent from $4.3 million a year ago. Its SG&A spending was $14.7 million, down 13 percent from $16.9 million in Q3 2018.

The company finished the quarter with $55.2 million in cash and cash equivalents.

Meridian previously provided guidance of a net revenue decrease of 3 percent to 6 percent and non-GAAP EPS of $0.60 to $0.65 for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2019, with a mid- to high-single digit decline in diagnostics revenues and low- to mid-single digit growth in life science revenues. The company today stated it expects fiscal 2019 revenues to be down approximately 6 percent, with diagnostics segment revenues down high single digits and life science segment revenues up low single digits.